“Grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” -2 Peter 3:18a
You’ve learned that there is a God. You’ve come to God with a broken heart and a contrite spirit. You’ve moved through the steps of teshuvah, repented and have been restored. You’re looking for a denomination to be baptized into, or have been baptized, and you’re looking to have the physical manifestation (laying on of hands) to receive the Holy Ghost (baptism by fire). What’s next?
The next steps are ones you won’t take alone but are very personal. There are different paths one may be called on within the kingdom of God. Each has its own duties and responsibility. We cannot choose these for ourselves but are called to them. They are: seeker, disciple, and minister.
Up until now, you’ve been seeking Christ, and investigating Mormon Kabbalah. You’ve been learning about God, teshuvah, the Fellowship (nondenominational Mormonism) or a Latter Day Saint sect. It doesn’t matter if you’ve come from (or are even still a part of) a particular denomination. The reality is that we are and will always be seeking truth, this is the nature of Mormon Kabbalah. We must be ever learning, pressing forward to learn more of God’s Word. Before finding Christ or deciding to fully embrace Mormon Kabbalah one is still a seeker or investigator.
This is not something we do alone. Remember what Jesus taught us: “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them” (Matthew 18: 20). If there isn’t a denomination close by you feel called to worship with, start a study group. Look for others around you or online to talk with. Just remember, no one has all the answers. As you learn you will also teach.
As soon as one accepts Christ as their personal savior, they become a disciple and a member of God’s heavenly Church (the Church of Christ). If one feels called to join a particular denomination, they’ll also be a member of that congratulation as a disciple of Jesus. The Fellowship is always here to help, and seekers and disciples give us people to minister to.
Disciples do have duties. Their duties are their baptismal covenants. As Alma taught us:
Behold, here are the waters of Mormon (for thus were they called) and now, as ye are desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people, and are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light; yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even until death, that ye may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection, that ye may have eternal life. -Mosiah 9:38-40 RAV, 18:8-9 OPV
Even as disciples, we have a duty to study the Gospel, grow in Grace, and help others. Disciples teach of Christ by our example. We share in times of joy and sorrow. We are always missionaries, leading others to investigate Mormonism by seeking after Christ.
Every denomination has ministers that help those in the kingdom. Moroni teaches us:
Behold, elders, priests, and teachers… and the church did meet together oft to fast, and to pray, and to speak one with another concerning the welfare of their souls; and they did meet together oft to partake of bread and wine in remembrance of the Lord Jesus. And they were strict to observe that there should be no iniquity among them… And their meetings were conducted by the church after the manner of the workings of the Spirit and by the power of the Holy Ghost; for as the power of the Holy Ghost led them whether to preach, or exhort, or to pray, or to supplicate, or to sing, even so it was done. -Moroni 6:2a, 5-9 OPV, 6:1b, 6-9 RAV
Ministers teach of Christ and hold the keys to ordinances. They help teach investigators, disciples, and other ministers. People are called to different types of ministries.
Within the Fellowship, there are two priesthood’s ministers may be called to, the lesser and the greater. The lesser is called the Aaronic or Levitical Priesthood for those that identify as male, and for those that identify as female there is the Sisterhood of Miriam. The greater is called the Melchizedek for those that identify as male and the Sisterhood of Magdalene for those that identify as female.
The lesser priesthood is for those called to preform outer ordinances such as the sacraments of baptism and communion. They also teach the Gospel and assist the higher priesthood in their duties.
The higher priesthood is for those called to minister in leadership roles, give the gift of the Holy Ghost, heal the sick, and guide disciples to deeper relationships with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Gifts of the Spirit
Ministers are also disciples, and investigators. Likewise, disciples are also investigators. Regardless of the place God has called one to, we all have been blessed with gifts of the Spirit that we use to help one another grow in Christ.
And there are different ways that these gifts are administered; but it is the same God who worketh all in all; and they are given by the manifestations of the Spirit of God unto men to profit them.
- For behold, to one is given by the Spirit of God that he may teach the word of wisdom;
- And to another, that he may teach the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; and to another, exceeding great faith; and to another, the gifts of healing by the same Spirit;
- And to another, exceeding great faith; and to another, the gifts of healing by the same Spirit;
- And again, to another, that he may work mighty miracles;
- And again, to another, that he may prophesy concerning all things;
- And again, to another, the beholding of angels and ministering spirits;
- And again, to another, all kinds of tongues;
- And again, to another, the interpretation of languages and of divers kinds of tongues.
And all these gifts come by the Spirit of Christ; and they come unto every man severally according as he will. And I would exhort you, my beloved brethren, that ye remember that every good gift cometh of Christ. -Moroni 10:9-13 RAV, 10:8b-18 OPV
As we grow in the Gospel, we learn what our gifts are, and how to use them to bless others in God’s name.